MURFREESBORO -- Marshall County Schools Director Roy Dukes was among five "unsung heroes" honored Thursday at Middle Tennessee State University's 15th Annual Unity Luncheon where more than 200 friends, family and guests gathered for the event.
The Unity Banquet is MTSU's annual kickoff to Black History Month.
From sports to academics, Dukes has been instrumental in promoting the education of students and teachers, according to an announcement from MTSU about Dukes' award. "His legacy of leadership and service, faithfully upheld and championed, has helped define his mission and purpose as an educator and community leader."
"It becomes energizing to get involved and do a lot of things to help people," Dukes said. "The most satisfying is to help children."
During his welcoming remarks in the James Union Building, MTSU President Dr. Sidney A. McPhee said the five individuals have been influential and also include Carolyn Peebles of Smyrna and Murfreesboro residents Ernestine Johnson, Wordna McKnight and Goldy Wade.
Keynote speaker Sharon Shaw-McEwen, a professor of social work at MTSU, challenged the audience to live a winning life like the honorees.
"It is indeed quite an honor for all of us to be here to celebrate what you have done," Shaw-McEwen said to Dukes and the other four who were recognized. "A winning life takes giving."
Then turning to the audience she said, "May you live a winning life."
Before Dukes became director of schools in Marshall County, he's been a teacher, coach, assistant principal, principal and supervisor. He is past chairman of the Lewisburg Housing Authority, president of the Rotary Club and is a member of the South Central Regional Health Board.